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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Ireland > Dispute resolution > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings


Index of tables

  1. Dispute resolution
  2. Leading individuals: Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next Generation Partners

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'Excellent adviser' Liam Kennedy and David Baxter lead the team at A&L Goodbody, which is praised for the 'practicality, decisiveness and confidence of its advice'. Enda Hurley and newly promoted partner Tom Casey represented the National Asset Management Agency, The Square Management and Indego in Commercial Court proceedings relating to a multimillion-euro commercial development. Eoin MacNeill and Eileen Roberts are also key contacts. 

The team at Arthur Cox counts Aer Lingus and Facebook among its clients. Practice head Andrew Lenny successfully defended daa in four proceedings relating to the development of a second runway at Dublin Airport and the resurfacing of an existing one, and Isabel Foley acted for Dunnes Stores in an action relating to advertising regulations and judicial review proceedings. Conor McDonnell, David O’Donohoe and Richard Willis are also noted.

Maurice Phelan leads the practice at Mason Hayes & Curran, which stands out for its 'personal service, integrity, and commercial and practical advice' and its sector specialisms in finance and property. The 'able and experienced' Liam Guidera and 'clear, efficient, and hard-working' senior associate Conor O’Leary acted for shopping centre owner IMRF II Frascati in a dispute with Marks & Spencer. Richard Woulfe and Tanya Colbert are also recommended. Jane Pilkington left the firm.

The members of Matheson's team 'engage thoroughly with the subject at hand and are anxious to move the matter forward: they are decision makers'. Clients range from financial institutions and property developers to insurance companies and large multinationals. Tom Hayes heads the team; Sharon Daly and April McClements 'use a common-sense approach to solving any issues and are open to finding novel solutions'; and Nicola Dunleavy is another key contact. Highlights included acting for a financial institution in complex, multi-jurisdictional litigation arising from the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme fraud.

McCann FitzGerald's practice is 'highly collaborative and creative in its strategic approach to arguments'. In a stand-out piece of litigation work, team head Terence McCrann, Karyn Harty, Megan Hooper and Sean Barton are acting for Independent News and Media in proceedings stemming from a whistleblower report made in November 2016. The team also includes Audrey Byrne and Michael Coonan ('both exceptionally bright, insightful lawyers'), Helen Kilroy and Roddy Bourke.

The team at William Fry has expanded its client base to include the National Treasury Management Agency. Practice head Owen O’Sullivan is acting for an Irish businessman in constitutional proceedings against the state, and Garrett Breen and consultant Laura Murdock are representing a government department in a commission of investigation into banking transactions. Lisa Carty, Fergus Doorly and Carol Plunkett are also noted.

Beauchamps regularly acts for clients in highly regulated industries such as financial services, healthcare and insurance. Practice head Emma Keegan is representing the Health Information and Quality Association in relation to a statutory investigation into the National Maternity Hospital. Thomas O’Dwyer secured an injunction to block several piracy websites on behalf of the Motion Picture Association of America. Mark Heslin, Barry Cahir and Claire Callanan are also noted.

Byrne Wallace's team is noted for its 'proactive approach, sound legal advice and willingness to go the extra mile for clients'. The practice has particular expertise in regulatory investigations, acting for public bodies and handling corporate, IP and property litigation. Jon Legorburu and health and social care specialist Sinead Kearney lead the team. Valerie Hourigan and Séan O’Donnell are also key contacts.

DAC Beachcroft Dublin is particularly well known for commercial and public sector litigation and acting for insurer clients. Dublin office head Lisa Broderick leads the practice; Gary Rice is acting for the Irish Pharmacy Union in a dispute with the Department of Health and the HSE regarding financial emergency pay cuts; and Rowena McCormack is representing Savills in high-profile commercial and defamation cases. James Colville is also recommended.

The 'proactive and solution-driven' team at Eugene F. Collins specialises in professional negligence proceedings. Practice head Maura Connolly and Caoilfhionn Ní Chuanacháin are acting for the liquidators of an insolvent hedge fund in claims against a fund services platform, and Terry Leggett is representing Red Flag Consulting in proceedings brought against it by businessman Denis O'Neil. Ronan O’Neill, the 'very approachable' David Cantrell and Rachel Shanley are also recommended.

'Unstinting attention to detail sets the team apart' at¬†Eversheds Sutherland; it focuses on professional negligence and public sector litigation in particular. Norman Fitzgerald¬†and Stephen Barry¬†are defending EY against an ‚ā¨80m auditors professional negligence claim stemming from the financial crisis. Dermot McEvoy¬†specialises in construction and property disputes; Aisling Gannon¬†and Jim Trueick¬†have healthcare and insurance expertise; and Pamela O‚ÄôNeill¬†is noted for regulatory work.

'Top advocate' Michael Kavanagh heads the 'refreshingly client-focused and commercially astute' team at LK Shields Solicitors. Jennifer Clarke, who is 'direct and straightforward in her approach and brings solutions to her clients', successfully obtained orders for judgment against a number of borrowers on behalf of Pepper Asset Servicing. Amy Bradley, the 'hardworking, knowledgeable and pleasant' Ciara O’Kennedy and consultant Edmund Butler are also recommended.

Robin McDonnell heads the team at Maples Group, which is known for its strength in the construction, financial services and funds sectors. Brian Clarke is acting for D2 Private in relation to the judicial review of a dawn raid, and Kevin Harnett is representing a construction firm in an action pertaining to properties affected by pyritic heave. Enda O’Keefe and Alan O’Sullivan, who joined from Hayes Solicitors, are other key contacts. Dudley Solan retired.

Philip Lee's team has 'powerful technical expertise and ever-expanding knowledge and experience'. Practice head Damien Young is 'an outstanding litigator', with particular strengths in data protection, regulatory and public law. Anne Bateman handles commercial and regulatory litigation in Ireland for Ryanair, and Clare Cashin is acting for a government agency in a series of procurement challenges. Rachel Minch and Murrough McMahon (who is 'pragmatic, with a good sense of commerciality') are also key contacts.

Kieran Cowhey¬†leads the team at Dillon Eustace, which has been particularly active in financial services litigation and shareholder disputes. Peter Bredin¬†successfully secured an ‚ā¨8.7m judgment for Seaconview fund against a guarantor of loans. John O‚ÄôRiordan¬†and John Doyle¬†are also key contacts. Other clients include the National Asset Management Agency, Allied Irish Banks and the Motor Insurers' Bureau of Ireland.

Mary Hough and Joe O’Malley lead the 'down-to-earth' and 'exceptionally thorough' team at Hayes Solicitors. O'Malley and new partner Jeremy Erwin are 'approachable, grounded and sensible'; the duo are acting for one of the defendants in litigation arising from the collapse of various Belfry Property Funds. Hough, Louise O’Rourke, Caroline Crowley (who has 'keen intellect and extensive experience in this area') and recently promoted partner Martha Wilson specialise in healthcare cases.

'Excellent negotiator' Andrew McGahey joined Kennedys in January 2018 from Mayer Brown International LLP in London to head the dispute resolution team and act as Dublin office managing partner. The practice, which is noted for its 'strength in depth', specialises in professional indemnity work across the construction, healthcare, financial services and transport sectors. In addition, Daniel Scanlon and Noel Devins are active in defamation cases. Hugh Kennedy and Joanne O’Sullivan are also key contacts.

Ronan Daly Jermyn has a strong insurer client base, including Travelers and Zurich, and is active in media, healthcare and aviation disputes, among others. Cork-based Darryl Broderick leads the practice; Ronan Geary acted for daa in judicial review proceedings relating to the award of a construction contract for a new fire service facility at Cork Airport; and Peter Lennon joined the Dublin office from Maples Group.

Managing partner and employment expert John Lynch leads the 'ultra user-friendly' team at Whitney Moore. Brendan Moriarty specialises in financial services litigation; Aoife Murphy focuses on IP matters; and Gerry Carroll is 'one of the stand-out practitioners to go to in aviation in Ireland'. Robin Hayes, Emma Richmond and Michael Ohle were promoted to partner. Recent highlights include acting for US Oil & Gas in obtaining a Norwich Pharmacal order from the High Court against two Irish internet service providers to identify users who had posted defamatory comments online.

The Limerick-based team at Holmes O'Malley Sexton specialises in insurance defence and regulatory litigation, with the Private Security Authority and the Legal Aid Board among its clients. Robert Kennedy and newly promoted partners Michael Murphy and Pat McInerney are the key contacts. Dublin-based managing partner Harry Fehily also handles defamation claims.

At JW O'Donovan Solicitors, the team has 'great technical ability' and 'is very aware of the need to support clients through the dispute resolution process'; it regularly acts for commercial, state and insurance entities in employers' liability, product liability and public liability litigation. Cormac O’Hanlon, 'a first-class solicitor with a personal touch', leads the practice.

The team at Lavelle Solicitors is 'wonderful at understanding the case issues and dealing with the client sympathetically'. Financial services, defamation and professional negligence (particularly in relation to solicitors' firms) are key areas of focus. Practice head Ciarán Leavy, who 'stands out as a very knowledgeable lawyer with great attention to detail and always provides a top-class service', Marc Fitzgibbon and Michael Lavelle are the names to note.

Killian O’Reilly heads the team at McDowell Purcell, which is particularly active in financial services and insolvency litigation, as well as acting for several clients in relation to highly sensitive cyber breaches. Susie Higgins and Mark Woodcock are the other key team members.

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Legal Developments in Ireland for Dispute resolution

  • Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Ireland

    The enforcement of judgments between the EU member states is regulated by the Brussels I Regulation (44/2001, OJL 12/1, 16 January 2001) (‚Äúthe Regulation‚ÄĚ). On the 22nd December 2000, the European Council agreed the Regulation to replace the Brussels Convention on Jurisdiction and Enforcement of Judgments 1968 (‚Äúthe Brussels Convention‚ÄĚ). The purpose of the Regulation was to bring the law contained in the Brussels Convention into the main body of EC Law. The Regulation was implemented in Ireland by Statutory Instrument 52 of 2002, European Communities (Civil and Commercial Judgments) Regulations 2002, which came into force on the 1st March 2002.
    - Dillon Eustace

Legal Developments in Ireland

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • LANDWELL Bulletin: Managing in a Downturn

    As we are all well aware this is the most turbulent climate for business both nationally and internationally, that any of us have experienced. We have therefore focused this bulletin on areas where we believe we can help you take decisive steps to manage the issues that are required to get through the downturn and be properly prepared for the future.
  • The Companies (Amendment) Act 2009

    The Companies (Amendment) Act, 2009 (the ‚ÄúAct‚ÄĚ) was signed into law on 12 July 2009. The Act provides for signifi cant changes to company law compliance and enforcement. It gives increased powers of search and seizure to the Offi ce of the Director of Corporate Enforcement (‚ÄúODCE‚ÄĚ) and expands disclosure obligations with regard to transactions between a company and its directors (including specifi c changes for licensed banks). The Act also relaxes the requirement that at least one director of an Irish company must be resident in the State.
  • New Rules for Acquiring Transactions in the Financial Sector

    In line with EU-mandated requirements, Ireland has introduced new rules governing acquisitions, in whole or in part, of certain regulated financial institutions.
  • Irish Merger Control: Review of Key Developments in 2008

    A 47% Year-on-Year Drop in the Number of Deals Notified: Reflecting the global decline in merger activity, the number of deals notified to the Competition Authority fell to 38 in 2008, a 47% decrease from 2007, when 72 deals were notified, and a more than 60% decrease from the 2006 peak of 98 notified deals.
  • European Communities (Takeover Bids (Directive 2004/25/EC)) Regulations 2006

    The EU Takeovers Directive (2004/25/EC) (the ‚ÄúTakeovers Directive‚ÄĚ) has been transposed into Irish law by the European Communities (Takeover Bids (Directive 2004/25/EC)) Regulations, 2006 (S. I. No. 255 of 2006) (the ‚ÄúTakeovers Regulations‚ÄĚ). The stated aim of the Takeovers Directive is to strengthen the Single Market in financial services by facilitating cross-border restructuring and enhancing minority shareholder protection. Many of the provisions of the Directive are already contained in the existing Irish regime for the supervision of takeovers set out in the Irish Takeover Panel Act, 1997 (the ‚ÄúAct‚ÄĚ), the Takeover Rules, 2001 (the ‚ÄúRules‚ÄĚ) and the Companies Acts 1963 ‚Äď 2005, which will continue to apply. The Takeovers Regulations cater for those areas not already dealt with in the existing regime or areas of the regime that needed to be adjusted as a result of the requirements of the Takeovers Directive.
  • Establishing a Retail Fund in Ireland for sale in Japan Fund Structures and Features

    The issuing of securities of offshore funds for public sale into Japan is governed by a combination of the Securities and Exchange Law of Japan (the "SEL") which is enforced by the Japanese Ministry of Finance ("MOF"), the Law Concerning Investment Trust and Investment Company of Japan (the "Investment Funds Law") which is enforced by the Financial Services Agency of Japan ("FSA").Establishing a Retail Fund in Ireland for sale in Japan Fund Structures and Features
  • Equality before the Law

    Employment Equality legislation in Ireland is to be found in the Employment Equality Act 1998 as amended by the Equality Act 2004. This legislation is extremely detailed but in effect makes it unlawful for employers to discriminate against a person on the basis of gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, and membership of the traveller community. These are referred to as the ‚Äúdiscriminatory grounds‚ÄĚ.
  • Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Ireland

    The enforcement of judgments between the EU member states is regulated by the Brussels I Regulation (44/2001, OJL 12/1, 16 January 2001) (‚Äúthe Regulation‚ÄĚ). On the 22nd December 2000, the European Council agreed the Regulation to replace the Brussels Convention on Jurisdiction and Enforcement of Judgments 1968 (‚Äúthe Brussels Convention‚ÄĚ). The purpose of the Regulation was to bring the law contained in the Brussels Convention into the main body of EC Law. The Regulation was implemented in Ireland by Statutory Instrument 52 of 2002, European Communities (Civil and Commercial Judgments) Regulations 2002, which came into force on the 1st March 2002.
  • E-Discovery

    Unlike the United States, which is leading the way in relation to e-discovery and where the disclosure of electronic data has become standard procedure, as of yet there is no standard protocol or practice direction issued in relation to e-discovery in Ireland. Despite this fact, Irish lawyers are beginning to appreciate the invaluable nature of electronic data which can be retrieved and used in commercial litigation.
  • Disclosure Requirements with respect to Company Particulars

    Directive 2003/58/EC amending Directive 68/151/EEC (the ‚ÄúFirst Disclosure Directive‚ÄĚ) became effective on 1st April, 2007 having been transposed into Irish law by the European Communities (Companies) (Amendment) Regulations 2007 (S.I. No. 49 of 2007) (the ‚ÄúRegulations‚ÄĚ).

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